Head shot of Doctor Robert Howard

Dr. Robert T. Howard is a board-certified plastic surgeon serving the greater Maryland area after a distinguished career with the United States Navy. He is driven to provide comprehensive, compassionate, and state-of-the-art plastic surgery and reconstructive care to his patients.

His commitment to service, from providing critical medical aid through global conflicts to humanitarian aid missions, has led him to see firsthand the power of surgery to help people overcome obstacles and get back their lives.

Today, he sees that transformative power in aesthetic and cosmetic surgery. At Plastic Surgery Specialists, he is able to give world-class care to patients on an even more individualized basis.

After graduating from the Naval Academy in 1993, he began his medical training in Maryland at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (1997) and continued with the Internship Program at the Naval Medical Center in Portsmouth, VA. He did his residency training at the Naval Medical Center in San Diego, California and at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, Georgia.

Dr. Howard’s time in the United States Navy saw him stationed in posts around the world, from first working as a Diving Medical Officer in Guam to becoming the Ship’s Surgeon on the USS Nimitz in the Persian Gulf. Through it all, he demonstrated his passion for supporting the men and women serving this country.

He was honored to become the Chief of Plastic Surgery at the National Naval Medical Center and then the Chief of Plastic Surgery at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. Soon after he was deployed to NATO Role 3 in Kandahar, Afghanistan as the Director of Surgical Services.

After 27 years in the Navy, Dr. Howard now focuses his service on the community in which he lives. Dedicated to helping his patients feel their absolute best, he performs a wide range of cosmetic, aesthetic, and reconstructive surgeries, including breast augmentation and reconstruction, as well as body contouring surgery.

Dr. Howard is board certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgeons, a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons, American Society of Plastic Surgeons, American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (aka Aesthetic Society), American Society for Reconstructive Microsurgery, Northeastern Society of Plastic Surgeons, Maryland Society of Plastic Surgeons, and the National Capital Society of Plastic Surgeons.

When not practicing medicine, Dr. Howard spends time with his wife, twin daughters, and son, sharing with them the Anne Arundel County he’s known since growing up here as a boy. In those moments between work and home, he’s passionate about honing his craft as a woodworker and furniture maker, along with the occasional fishing trip.

To meet with Dr. Howard in person, request your consultation online or call us at 410.841.5355 to schedule your appointment.

Professional Resume

Board Certification

American Board of Plastic Surgery

Undergraduate Education

United States Naval Academy
Annapolis, MD
Graduation Date: 1993
Degree Awarded: Bachelor of Science, Chemistry (With Merit)

Post Graduate Training

Plastic Surgery Residency
Emory University
Atlanta, GA

General Surgery Residency
Naval Medical Center
San Diego, CA

Surgery Internship
Naval Medical Center
Portsmouth, VA

Medical School

Name: Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences
Location: Bethesda, MD
Graduation Date: 1997
Degree Awarded: Doctor of Medicine

Membership in Scientific Societies

American College of Surgeons

American Society of Plastic Surgeons
American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (aka Aesthetic Society)
American Society for Reconstructive Microsurgery
Northeastern Society of Plastic Surgeons
Maryland Society of Plastic Surgeons
National Capital Society of Plastic Surgeons






Kumar AR, Ritter EM, Hunt P, Howard RT. “Successful Knee Extensor Mechanism Reconstruction in a Warfare Related Open Lower Extremity Injury Complicated by Mucormycosis Infection: A Case Report.” Journal of Orthopaedic Trauma. 26(2):e7-e10, February 2012.

Santiago GF, Bograd B, Basile PL, Howard RT, Fleming M, Valerio IL. “Soft Tissue Injury Management with a Continuous External Tissue Expander.” Annals of Plastic Surgery. 69(4): 418-421, October 2012.

Green JM, Thomas S, Sabino J, Howard RT, Basile PL, Dryden S, Crecelius C, Valerio IL. “The Use of Intraoperative Fluorescent Angiography to Assess and Optimize Free Tissue Transfer in Head and Neck reconstruction.” Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery. 71(8):1439-49, August 2013.

Ratnayake AS, Bala M, Howard R, Rajapakse K, Samarasinghe B, Worlton TJ. “Identification of Risk Factors For Arterial Repair Failures and Lessons Learned: Experiences from Managing 129 Combat Vascular Extremity Wounds in the Sri Lankan War.” Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery, March 2019.

Wade SM, Nesti LJ, Wind GG, Howard RT, Souza JM. “The Inverted Free Functioning Gracilis Muscle Transfer For Restoration of Elbow Flexion Following Delayed Presentation or Failed Primary Nerve Reconstruction of Upper Trunk Injuries,” Techniques in Hand & Upper Extremity Surgery, July 23, 2019

Valerio IL, Basile PL, Howard RT, Kumar AR. “The Changing Patterns of Extremity War Trauma and Microsurgical Challenges: The Afghanistan Experience.” Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery. 128(4S):70. October 2011. 

Howard RT, Basile PL, Valerio IL, Nesti L. “The Use of Intraoperative Fluorescent Angiography To Maximize Fasciocutaneous Flap Coverage of Battle Field Extremity Injuries.” Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery. 128(4S): 79-80. October 2011. 

Valerio IL, Sabino J, Tintle S, Fleming M, Howard RT, Basile PL, Martin B, and Shashikant M. “Multiple Flap Limb Salvages within Same War Wounded Casualties: A Consecutive Case Series over a Decade of War Trauma.” Plast Reconstr Surg. 130(5s): 92-3, November 2012 

Sabino J, Tintle S, Martin B, Howard R, Fleming M, Valerio IL. “Review of Pedicled Groin and Thoracoepigastric Flaps in War-Related Extremity Trauma.” Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery. 136(4S): 10-11, October 2015. 

Research Experience/Presentations

Howard RT. “Elevating the Inferior Pedicle,” Presented at Grand Rounds, MedStar Georgetown Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery, Washington, DC, September 17, 2020. 

Howard RT. “The Art and Science of Healing” Colloquium, American Association for the Advancement of Science & National Museum of Health and Medicine, Washington, DC, July 11, 2019. 

Howard RT. “Expanding Breast Conservation Surgery: The Oncoplastic Approach.” John P. Murtha Cancer Center’s Breast Cancer Summit, Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, Bethesda, MD, October 17, 2018 

Howard RT. “From Battlefield Limb Salvage to Limb Restoration.” Presented at special session of the Sri Lankan College of Military Medicine, Colombo Army Hospital, Sri Lanka, August 2018. 

Wade SM, Nesti LJ, Howard RT, Miller ME, Smith JK, Souza JM. “Salvaging a Missed Opportunity: The Inverted Free Functional Gracilis Muscle Transfer for Restoration of Elbow Flexion Following an Upper Trunk Injury,” Presented at American Society for Peripheral Nerve 2019 Annual Meeting, Palm Desert, CA, February 2019 

Ratnayake AS, Bala M, Samarasinghe B, Worlton TJ, Howard RT. “Prolonged Medical Evacuation Times in Combat Extremity Vascular Trauma from the Sri Lanka Civil War Experience.” Annual Academic Session of the Association of Military Surgeons of the United States, October 2018 

Latham K, Martin BD, Howard R, Chung TC, Basile PB, Valerio IL, Burget G. “Military and Civilian Collaboration in Care: Achieving Optimal Results in Subtotal Nasal Reconstruction.” AMSUS The Society of Federal Health Professionals. Washington, DC, December 2014. 

Valerio IL, Sabino J, Tintle S, Fleming M, Howard R, Basile P, Martin BD, and Kumar A. “Emerging Trends in Flap Coverage for War-related Extremity Injuries: Reflections Over the Last Decade of Combat Casualties.” Military Health System Research Symposium (MHSRS), Fort Lauderdale, FL, August 2013. 

Dr. Spittler discusses tummy tucks.

“Dr. Spittler is very professional and helped me to feel comfortable and confident in my decision to get plastic surgery. I couldn’t be happier with the results. He is amazing!” – J. W.